Akkerman-Ingebrand • Mora, MN

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J. Cole webphotoJames A. Cole of Mora, died on Saturday, July 26, 2014 at home.  He was 76 years old.

MEMORIAL SERVICE will be held at 10:30 am. on Saturday, Aug. 2, at the Mora United Methodist Church with Rev. Robert Pesola officiating.

MEMORIAL VISITATION will be held from 5-7 pm. Friday, Aug. 1, at the Mora United Methodist Church and also one hr. prior to the service at the church on Saturday.

**Memorials are preferred in lieu of flowers to Kanabec County Hospice or the Mora United Methodist Church.**

James Alan Cole, of Mora, formerly of rural Isle, passed away on July 26, 2014 at his home.   He was 76 years old. 

Jim was born on a small farm in Hillman Township on June 23, 1938, the fourth son of Charles Cyrus and Mae (Durant) Cole.  He attended grade school in Warman and graduated from Mora High School in 1956. 

Jim was united in marriage to Edna (Lakeberg) Cole on May 31, 1957 at the Mora Methodist Church.  They made their home in Mora until their purchase of acreage on Pine Grove Farm north of Mora in 1958.  In 1974 they built a home on the Lakeberg family farm moving there in August of that year.  They resided there until their recent move to Mora.

Jim’s earliest work experience was hauling cans of milk with Clinton Bassett and brothers, Kip and Earl, and working with his dad hauling livestock to St. Paul.  After graduation he began working at the Farmer’s Co-op Creamery and Drying Plant (later known as Lakeland Dairies) and then Land O’Lakes Ice Cream in 1970.  With the closing of that plant in 1991, he started growing his beard which was to stay with him from then on.  He was employed at Daneco which ran the Five County composting and recycling facility until that closure in 1994.  After a brief time at Spring Lake Plastics in Cambridge, he resigned to devote full time to his Noah’s Ark themed craft business.  Fostering a carefully planned image as Noah, he delighted in demonstrating his Puzzle Ark to children of all ages at craft shows in several states. 

Over the years Jim was a very active member of the Mora Jaycees and the Mora Conservation Club.  He served on the Boards for the Brighter Day Activity Center and Senior Citizen Center.  He was also involved in Boy Scouts and 4-H and he and Edna were foster parents for several youth and babies. Upon retiring from the craft circuit in 2002, Jim became even more active in his community serving as a First Responder for the McGrath area and Kanabec County, the Kanabec County Sheriff’s Reserve, Ford Township Planning Commission and many positions on the Mora United Methodist Church Board.  Jim enjoyed recording and submitting Ford Township’s weather data to the State of Minnesota.  He was the driving force behind the annual reunions of his high school graduation class and loved doing that.  His years as a local Santa were very special to him also.

Jim dearly loved his family – his wife, his children and grandchildren.  He delighted in cheering on his grandkids at all their school activities especially cross country.  A special ‘borrowed cousin’, nieces, nephews and their families were all very special to him.   He loved his daylilies – always insisting on planting in ‘groups of one’ so he could have more varieties.  He loved cutting wood and doing any and all outside chores on the farm.  While he quit hunting deer, he never tired of watching them – even when they were eating his beloved daylilies.  His many dogs were a source of great joy.  Jim loved to read and his Kindle was his constant companion.  He enjoyed the fellowship while working on repair and maintenance projects at his church.  He always greeted everyone with a smile and a big hug.

Jim was preceded in death by his parents, Cy and Mae Cole, brothers, Clifford ‘Kip’ Cole, Earl Cole and Robert Cole. 

Jim is survived by his wife, Edna; daughters, Judy Cole (Todd Lerbakken) Blaine, MN and Sue Headlee (Dan) Pequot Lakes, MN; grandchildren, Jacob, Sam, and Elsa Headlee.  Extended family includes sisters-in-law Leoda Cole, Sonja Cole, both of Mora, and many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

A Memorial Service was held on Saturday, August 2, 2014 at Mora United Methodist Church with Rev. Robert Pesola officiating.   Music was provided by Jacki Peterson and the Mora United Methodist Praise Team.  Urn bearers were Jim’s grandchildren: Jacob, Sam and Elsa Headlee.  Memorials may be given to either the Mora United Methodist Church or Kanabec County Hospice.  Arrangements were handled by Akkerman-Ingebrand Funeral Home of Mora. 

11 thoughts on “JAMES A. COLE”

  1. Edna—-so sorry to hear about Jim. He was really a great guy and am sure he will be missed.

  2. Jim was a great classmate, the strong person in keeping our class reunions going yearly, but most of all a wonderful friend! We will miss him! Praying for you and your family Edna, as you go through this difficult time.

  3. Edna, and family, our thoughts and prayers are with you. If you need ANYTHING we are just a shout away so please let us know!! Love to you all!!!

  4. You accomplished so much in your life, and made all your goals to be sure Mom is going to be ok. We love and miss you so very much. You are now at peace. Greet all those that have gone before, who we miss so very much, and our beloved pets also. It has been an honor to be your daughter. Until we see you again, I love you, Dad, and cherish your memory.

  5. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all as you pass through this time of sorrow. Hoping for a soon arrival of golden memories for each of you. Jim must have been a great father to have raised a daughter like Judy who has graced the lives of so many.

  6. Warm smile, strong handshake, loving hugs, Jim welcomed everyone into his heart and he will always be in ours…never forgotten. We are honored to have known such a wonderful Christian man. Edna, we are heartbroken for you and your family and you remain in our thoughts and prayers.

  7. Edna ,

    We are sorry Jim is gone. He was a talented, generous, and all around nice guy — a valuable contributor to the community. Our condolences and sympathy to you.

    Leslie and John Hollister

  8. Edna~~~I was shocked when I first learned Jim had cancer and more so that it advanced so quickly. We had been praying for you both and now we will continue to do so for you and your family as you go through this difficult time of transition without Jim. (As you know, I experienced the lose of a precious soul mate 6 years ago after 44 years of marriage and I know it takes time to recover from such a loss.) I have fond memories of Jim and always enjoyed our extended conversations at our (yours and my) ” Class of 1955″ reunions. Jim was a genuinely super guy who will be dearly missed by the all those who were privileged to know him. God bless you and your family today and in the days ahead. Chuck Hohn

  9. Edna and family,
    We are so sorry to hear of Jim’s passing. What a great obit and such an active gentleman he was. We remember way back in the Jaycee and Mrs.Jaycee days and the fun we had. Would have been there last Sat. if we lived closer.Our love and prayers are with everyone.

  10. Husband, Dad and Uncle……he was special to all. In the fall my boys and I would stop by on our way home from deer hunting to show off deer (or an empty trailer) either way this was a way to connect. 2 years ago I met Jim and Edna at the Dari-Vi in Isle for dinner and traded them some walleye for a day lilly, that lilly will be with me forever and each year as is blooms I will have great memories…… I know in heaven there are 4 men with white beards all together now.

  11. Dear Edna, Judy, Sue, and family,
    I remember Jim as a gentle, generous spirit–always ready to jump in and support events at the Historical Society (such as his enthusiastic participation in pie-eating contests)–and always role-modeling kindness, compassion, and living life to the fullest. I am so, so deeply sorry for your loss.
    Julie Thompson (daughter of Lee and Marie)

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